Mila’s Meals book launch preparations

We’re getting closer to the book launch for Mila’s Meals and it has me slightly single minded for a spell, forgive me, I’ll broaden again in next week’s update.

We’ve been consumed with getting ready for the book launches and I’ve been delighted at the response we’ve had in the test kitchen working with the recipes for this book and how they’ve turned out.

Not only that, what came rather leftfield for me is that despite this book being aimed at babies and toddler feeding, it has actually unexpectedly resulted in solutions for my own household and my 9 year old daughter’s lunch boxes.

It has given me options for my own diet that just makes life so much easier and they’re delicious. I have two demands of my food – that it must be nutrient dense, made from real ingredients and utterly delicious. Generally those 3 qualities hold hands.

Last Friday after the muffin recipes were tested, I was actually able to give my daughter a muffin and eat one myself. This might not sound like a great marvel but it really was in our life.

I can’t give my daughter any sort of normal ‘muffin’ as they’re really just cake. Filled with industrial wheat and high levels of gluten and sugar and that’s before we’ve looked at the additives, it’s just a recipe for an upset stomach and a sugar high, insulin rush and crash. Muffins just aren’t and can’t be a part of a healthy diet in my opinion. They’re cupcakes without the icing really and a disaster for gut health and blood sugar.

What I have found challenging with attempting to keep gluten out of Kiara’s lunchboxes is that the alternative baked gluten free options have generally used nut and coconut flours. She can’t handle nut flour. I hate working with it. I have found most gluten-free options with nut flours – dense – often unpalatable and Kiara just spits it out. We gave up on that a while ago. She also doesn’t like coconut flour at all and even the best low carb baking options we have, haven’t been able to help me give her anything baked or floury, she can’t stand them.

So muffins are one of the things she wishes she could eat but never gets a yes to from me.

On Friday two of the muffin recipes were being tested from Mila’s Meals and at first glance I was a bit daunted by the ingredients. I had never considered baking with sorghum flour and rice flour and millet flour and similar flours. I’d never baked with sweet potato as the binding. These were all new concepts to me.

So we had two types to test in the evening and Kiara looked at me aghast and suspicious when I said not only were these muffins she could eat but ones I would be very happy she did, knowing that the ingredients in these would give her great nutrients and nothing that would upset her stomach.

So she piled in – I was worried – would she like these because if she doesn’t and rejects them like she usually does anything with nut flours, I’m going to battle to get parents to go for this and buy all the flours. She tentatively took a bite of the first, looked at me utterly surprised and said ‘oh my word, this is the nicest muffin I’ve ever tasted’. Then she ate three and said ‘please can I have these in my lunch box and for breakfast?’

I can’t tell you enough how great it felt – to see her enjoying something like that and knowing that I was happy with every single ingredient in there and didn’t have to quell her enthusiasm for them at all.

Then I had a novel thought – actually I could eat them too! A bran muffin with butter and cheddar used to be something that I loved and one thing I’ve often missed now that I keep sugar and refined flour out of my diet.

I flew to the fridge, grabbed some Gourmet Greek cheddar and ate one, knowing that I didn’t have to worry about spiking my bloodstream with insulin or have to worry about anything refined in it. It was delicious.

I then realized that we had a solution for lunch-boxes that I didn’t have before. Whipping up a batch of these over the week-end will have something great to add to her lunch boxes and that was just the start of it.

Every testing of the recipes gave me the same thing. Another solution and great addition for her lunchbox that has opened up a world of options I didn’t know about before.

It would delight me silly to think of children eating this way and babies being given this kind of nutritional start in life.

When I took a batch of the chocolate nut fudge we had made off to my son as a pre-snack to have at his cross-fit competition and also thought, hang on these would be great to have before gym – this is going to give quick good fats and energy – I realized again that this book isn’t just about babies and toddlers, it has solutions for the whole family.

That’s what I meant about this book being a game changer. It’s a treasure.

I think it catapults gluten-free options to new heights and deeply broadens this space for those who don’t like nut flours. The way she has cleverly mixed sweet potato and different gluten-free flours like brown rice, and millet and sorghum is very clever and it works. It’s been a whole new world of flavour too.

I think that this book is that complete that you aren’t going to need to do a google search or buy any other books for their whole childhood – there is enough in this book to give you years of lunch box options and a very sound template for good child nutrition as well as the whole family. From baby’s start to way beyond considering this has added dimension to both my daughter and son’s life and she’s 9 and he’s 23!

We’re excited to give you taste teasers at the book signing and launch of Mila’s Meals on Friday and Saturday. We’ll have some chocolate nut fudge, chocolate mousse, buffalo wings, seed crackers and hummus, kefir smoothies, veg and fruit juices, sweet potato rostis, great gluten-free muffins and more – food that tastes fantastic and doesn’t contain any sugar or flour or other nonsense. Food that you can incorporate into your life that helps you with a myriad of lunch box ideas that will equally benefit the rest of the family.

The Landmark bar are also giving those who attend specialist clean cocktails using organic mango , pomegranate and herbs from our store.

Think tequila with mango, pomegranate, rooibos tea,vanilla, honey and herbs and the non-alcoholic one, the same just minus the alcohol.

Their specialist mixologist loves making up the cleanest cocktails he can think of, using organic ingredients to make his syrups and mixtures so that you can have peak experience cocktails without refined sugar and syrups and colorants and the goodness of organic ingredients.

Please note that you do need to RSVP if you are going to attend to Linda – events@jozirealfood.co.za

I’m proud that this our first Jozi Real Food (R) evolution event because it ticks all the right boxes for what we are wanting to create with our events series. A greater community and food experience in Johannesburg, helping you to get easier access to not only the most nutrient dense food but also the tastiest and into a more empowered relationship with your pantry’s, with your eating experience and to help you not outsource the health of your family to conveyor belt big food.

There is a much richer and healthier world of food out there and our events series are here to strengthen The Jozi Real Food (R )evolution by empowering you with community and connection to great food and to expose you to the greatest voices in the space.

I hope to see you at the book launch.

I’ll be back next week with more news focused back on the store.

Debbie.

Mila's Meals book launch